Invasive tree roots can cause serious damage to your home’s foundation, your plumbing, structures, pathways and the surrounding landscape. They can also become tripping hazards if left unattended and can be difficult to mow and garden around. For these reasons, it’s important for homeowners to address what’s lurking just below the surface, (or sometimes, well above it!) and understand tree root management. Here are our top strategies for effectively managing tree roots at your property.
1. Choose The Tree Species Best Suited To Your Property
If you’re in the fortunate position of being able to select a new tree for your yard, you need to be aware that certain types of trees have more invasive, far-reaching root systems than others. Some have root systems that aggressively seek out nutrients and water and are more likely to cause damage, so choose wisely! Ask your nursery or local Arborist for some advice about what species would be best suited to your space or it could cost you dearly down the track.
2. Don’t Plant Too Close To Any Structures
Don’t plant your tree too close to your house or other structures, where tree roots can cause damage. Ideally you’ll want to plant your new tree at least 6 – 10 metres away from any structures, however this will depend on the tree species you’ve selected and the extent of its root system when the tree is mature. If you are unsure, ask your local Arborist for advice.
3. Inspect Trees And Roots
Taking the time to regularly inspect your trees as well as their root systems is key to discovering potential problems early. Look for any signs of root damage such as cracking or ‘heaving’ in the ground around the tree. The tree leaning or sagging and of course, exposed roots are all signs of issues. If you do notice any of these things, it’s best to consult with an Arborist who can do a full and thorough inspection and advise the best course of action to prevent further damage.
4. Install A Barrier
You may wish to restrict the growth of a tree’s roots by installing a physical root barrier. Barriers are normally made from solid, rigid materials and installed underground to literally create a barrier that the roots can’t penetrate, stopping damage to structures, pipes and foundations. It’s critical that the barrier is correctly installed for maximum effectiveness or it won’t stop aggressive root systems. You can also damage the tree if not done correctly so you may want to have this installed by a professional.
5. Water Correctly
It’s important you are not overwatering or under-watering your trees. Overwatering can lead to excessive root growth which can ultimately weaken the tree’s stability. Conversely, under-watering can cause the roots to extend out in search of water potentially causing damage. Knowing your tree species will help inform the frequency you should be watering. Ask your Arborist for guidance if you’re not sure.
6. Maintain Your Trees
As with most things, prevention is better than cure. Regular tree maintenance is essential to keeping your tree, and its root system, strong and healthy. Pruning, when done correctly, helps strengthen your tree and improve structural integrity and helps in maintaining a balanced root-to-canopy ratio, reducing the demand on the root system.
7. Tree Removal
If your tree’s root systems are out of control and causing a lot of damage, you may be left with no choice but to have the tree and its roots removed. Depending on the tree, its root system, the location of the tree and the extent of the roots, this can be quite a process to achieve success. Have your local Arborist do a full inspection before making any decisions and advise the best course of action for you.
8. Consult With An Arborist
If you’re unsure about what type of tree you have, proper watering care, how to best manage your tree roots or anything at all related to your trees, don’t hesitate to consult with the professionals. Arborists have the skill, knowledge and expertise that will help you protect your home and enjoy your beautiful trees for years to come. It could save you thousands of dollars and a big headache down the track.
If you’ve got tree root problems, we’ve got the solution! Aussie Tree Solutions have been taking care of South-East Qld trees for over forty years. Let our team of experienced professionals take the hassle out of your tree care. Our Consulting Arborists are experts in their field and will be able to offer invaluable advice and guidance about your trees and tree root management. Call Aussie Tree Solutions for a free quote on our professional tree root care and maintenance services today.